The World is Facing an Ever Increasing …

2018/08/16 Leave a comment

… Number of Climate-related Disasters

by Grete Mautner

New Eastern Outlook (August 09 2018)

Leading climate scientists have been discussing abnormal heat levels registered this summer in Europe and in other regions of the world. The general consensus is that this anomaly is a sign of global warming, which is believed to be caused by our irresponsible use of resources. The impacts are aplenty, including fires, floods, drought, abnormal heat. No matter what you believe in, the climate we live in is changing rapidly with every passing day, forcing us to face the consequences nobody initially anticipated. Last year alone, the losses suffered from natural disasters by various countries of the world exceeded 353 billion dollars.

Scientists say that by the end of the century, extreme heat waves capable of killing the entire population of a town in a couple of hours will hit India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (“NOAA“), recent years have been marked by an abrupt decline in Arctic sea ice, which resulted in the global sea level rising by three inches, exceeding the all-time high registered some 25 years ago. Moreover, the temperature of Arctic seas has also risen by up to four degrees in comparison with the average annual temperatures.

Global warming is also associated with intense hurricane seasons striking various regions of the world. Those seasons produce such devastating hurricanes like Maria that left the entire Caribbean coast in ruins, along with Harvey that brought unprecedented rainfalls to Texas and Louisiana. At the same time, the Middle East had to deal with extreme drought. In some regions of Syria, Lebanon, and Israel there haven’t been any rains at all. The summer heat stroke the south of California, the east of Canada and Scandinavia, with the temperature along the northern coast of Russia reaching thirty degrees Celsius. Over the course of last July, there was a total of 118 temperature records registered across the world. Last year, at least 330 different natural disasters caused by climate change occurred across the planet.

According to the MIT study released in the Nature Communications journal, extreme heat and extreme humidity growth threaten one of the most densely populated areas on Earth – the Great Plain of China, where Beijing is located. This could lead to the situation where, by the year 2070, the region that serves as a home for some 400 million people will become completely unsuitable for habitation. This is the third similar study by MIT on how densely populated regions of the world can be threatened by extreme temperatures, with the first two examining the future of the Persian Gulf and South Asia. However, in the case of the Great Chinese Plain, scientists see a much greater risk to the local population, with the temperature in this region already becoming twice as warm on the average. In 2013, extreme heat in this region lasted for a record of fifty days, with certain regions suffering from temperatures of 38 degrees Celsius.. In one of the largest cities in the east of China, Shanghai, back in 2013, a 141-year temperature record was recorded, leading to the early demise of several dozen people.

Most scientists agree that climate change poses a grave danger to the planet; however, among the threats typically associated with this phenomenon the deteriorating global security looks like the most frightening one.

It’s been noted that back in 2008, when severe weather cut into the world’s grain supply and drove up food prices, countries ranging from Morocco to Indonesia experienced social and political upheavals. More recently, food insecurity has been used as a weapon in the wars in Yemen and Syria.

According to the Center for Climate and Security, failure to address such “climate-driven risks” could lead to increased fighting over water, food, energy, and land, particularly in already unstable regions.

One of the recent studies associated a fourteen percent increase in the number of conflicts with the rising temperature levels. Moreover, psychological studies have shown that when people are subjected to uncomfortably hot temperatures, they show increased levels of aggression.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, researchers have found a strong correlation between three decades of rising temperatures and outbreaks of civil war. If warming trends continue, civil wars and other conflicts will become more common in Africa, the South China Sea, the Arctic, Central America, and elsewhere.

It’s been rightly pointed out that avoiding such outcomes will require renewed commitment to multilateral treaties such as the 2015 Paris climate agreement, which has been weakened by the withdrawal of the United States. Additionally, new strategies are needed to coordinate disaster-relief efforts.

_____

Grete Mautner is an independent researcher and journalist from Germany, exclusively for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook.

https://journal-neo.org/2018/08/09/the-world-is-facing-an-ever-increasing-number-of-climate-related-disasters/

Advertisements
Categories: Uncategorized

America’s Lengthening Enemies List

2018/08/16 Leave a comment

by Patrick J Buchanan

buchanan.org/blog (August 14 2018)

Friday, deep into the seventeenth year of America’s longest war, Taliban forces overran Ghazni, a provincial capital that sits on the highway from Kabul to Kandahar.

The ferocity of the Taliban offensive brought US advisers along with US air power, including a B-1 bomber, into the battle.

“As the casualty toll in Ghazni appeared to soar on Sunday”, The Wall Street Journal reported, “hospitals were spilling over with dead bodies, corpses lay in Ghazni’s streets, and gunfire and shelling were preventing relatives from reaching cemeteries to bury their dead”.

In Yemen Monday, a funeral was held in the town square of Saada for forty children massacred in an air strike on a school bus by Saudis or the UAE, using US-provided planes and bombs.

“A crime by America and its allies against the children of Yemen”, said a Houthi rebel leader.

Yemen is among the worst humanitarian situations in the world, and in creating that human-rights tragedy, America has played an indispensable role.

The US also has 2,000 troops in Syria. Our control, with our Kurd allies, of that quadrant of Syria east of the Euphrates, is almost certain to bring us into eventual conflict with a regime and army insisting that we get out of their country.

As for our relations with Turkey, they have never been worse.

President Erdogan regards our Kurd allies in Syria as collaborators of his own Kurdish-terrorist PKK. He sees us as providing sanctuary for exile cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Erdogan says was behind the attempted coup in 2016 in which he and his family were targeted for assassination.

Last week, when the Turkish currency, the lira, went into a tailspin, President Trump piled on, ratcheting up US tariffs on Turkish aluminum and steel. If the lira collapses and Turkey cannot meet its debt obligations, Erdogan will lay the blame at the feet of the Americans and Trump.

Which raises a question: How many quarrels, conflicts and wars, and with how many adversaries, can even the mighty United States sustain?

In November, the most severe of US sanctions will be imposed on Iran. Among the purposes of this policy: Force as many nations as possible to boycott Iranian oil and gas, sink its economy, bring down the regime.

Iran has signaled a possible response to its oil and gas being denied access to world markets. This August, Iranian gunboats exercised in the Strait of Hormuz, backing up a regime warning that if Iranian oil cannot get out of the Gulf, the oil of Arab OPEC nations may be bottled up inside as well. Last week, Iran test-fired an anti-ship ballistic missile.

Iran has rejected Trump’s offer of unconditional face-to-face talks unless the US first lifts the sanctions imposed after withdrawing from the nuclear deal.

With no talks, a US propaganda offensive underway, the Iranian rial sinking, and the economy sputtering, regular demonstrations against the regime, and new sanctions scheduled for November, it is hard to see how a US collision with Tehran can be avoided.

This holds true as well for Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

Last week, the US imposed new sanctions on Russia for its alleged role in the nerve-agent poisoning of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the British town of Salisbury.

Though the US had already expelled sixty Russian diplomats for the poisoning, and Russia vehemently denies responsibility – and conclusive evidence has not been made public and the victims have not been heard from – far more severe sanctions are to be added in November.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is warning that such a US move would cross a red line: “If … a ban on bank operations or currency use follows, it will amount to a declaration of economic war … And it will warrant a response with economic means, political means and, if necessary, other means”.

That the sanctions are biting is undeniable. Like the Turkish lira and Iranian rial, the Russian ruble has been falling and the Russian people are feeling the pain.

Last week also, a US Poseidon reconnaissance plane, observing China’s construction of militarized islets in the South China Sea, was told to “leave immediately and keep out”.

China claims the sea as its national territory.

And North Korea’s Kim Jong Un apparently intends to hold onto his arsenal of nuclear weapons.

“We’re waiting for the North Koreans to begin the process of denuclearization, which they committed to in Singapore and which they’ve not yet done”, John Bolton told CNN last week.

A list of America’s adversaries here would contain the Taliban, the Houthis of Yemen, Bashar Assad of Syria, Erdogan’s Turkey, Iran, North Korea, Russia, and China – a pretty full plate.

Are we prepared to see these confrontations through, to assure the capitulation of our adversaries? What do we do if they continue to defy us?

And if it comes to a fight, how many allies will we have in the battles and wars that follow?

Was this the foreign policy America voted for?

Do You Appreciate Reading Our Emails and Website?
Let us know how we are doing –
Send us a Thank You Via Paypal!
https://paypal.me/lindamuller

http://buchanan.org/blog/americas-lengthening-enemies-list-129887

Categories: Uncategorized

The End of the US Unipolar Moment Is Irreversible

2018/08/16 Leave a comment

by Federico Pieraccini

Strategic Culture Foundation (August 14 2018)

The past weeks have shown how part of the American establishment is weighing the pros and cons of the Trump administration’s strategies around the world. I have a strong feeling that in the coming weeks we will see the destabilizing effects of American politics, especially towards its closest allies.

A disastrous flip of events appears to be on its way in case Trump were to lose the November midterm elections (the House and Senate elections). If this were to happen, the Trump administration would probably exploit the Russia gate conspiracy claiming that Moscow had now acted in favour of Democrats. Trump could argue that Moscow was disappointed by the lack of progress in softening US sanctions against Russia; indeed, by Trump’s measures against Russia (expulsions, sanctions, property seizures) and its allies (China, Iran, and Syria).

Trump would not hesitate to claim Russian interference in the midterms to aid the Democrats, citing intelligence reports. He would say that Russia aims to create chaos in the US by placing roadblocks in the way of attempts to “Make America Great Again” and handing the House and Senate to the Democrats. He would use the electoral defeat to blame his accusers for getting aid from Russia. In doing so, he would be accelerating the implosion of his administration in an all-out war with the establishment. The mainstream media would dismiss Trump’s accusations against the Democrats of collusion with Russia as a conspiracy theory of an unravelling presidency. All this, summed up, would lead to the Democrats having majority in both houses, easily proceeding to the impeachment of Trump.

Italy is piggybacking on the US, operating side by side with Washington to expand its role in North Africa, especially in Libya. However, Rome will have to offer something in return to please Trump. Evidence points to the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (“TAP“) as the quid pro quo, the US encouraging Italy to complete it in order to put pressure on Germany’s North Stream II project and undermine Russian gas deliveries to the EU. I have the impression that the only card available for Italy to play (and which interests Trump) is an endorsement of Washington’s positions on Iran, given that Italy already shares in common with Washington differences with Paris and Berlin on many issues. In this sense, Conte’s words about US intelligence information on the JCPOA paves the way for further decisions:

 

 

I didn’t take a specific stand. I said we are willing to evaluate the necessity to take more rigorous stances if the (nuclear) accord is shown to be ineffective. We are waiting to have elements of intelligence, Italy would like to evaluate it with its EU partners.

 

As evidence of Washington’s failed strategy towards Iran, India continues to buy crude oil from Iran, increasing the amount in the last month by 52%. China is also increasing its importation from Iran. Meanwhile, Iran is working with other countries to circumvent the US dollar in order to sustain their mutual trade within a new framework of agreements. Washington is especially disappointed with New Delhi, with American officials continuing to reiterate that India’s intentions align with Washington’s. Since November, with the imposition of counter-sanctions on countries that continue to work with Iran, Washington’s bluff will become evident to everybody, much to the disappointment of the Trump administration.

In the meantime, relations between Canada and Saudi Arabia have almost completely broken down on account of human rights. Ambassadors have been expelled and there is a continuing war of words, with trade between the two countries being brought to a stop. This is the latest example of the divisions manifesting themselves within the Western elites, with Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Trump administration being in opposition to the likes of France, Germany, and Canada.

What is also clear is that the issue of energy is central to Washington’s strategy. Between criticism of the German Nord Stream II and invitations to Italy to finish the Trans Adriatic Pipeline, it is clear that both the Trump administration and the policy makers of the deep state are strongly concerned about what actions allies and enemies could take to overcome the pressure brought to bear by Washington on the issues of energy, Iran, and sanctions. This shows that the US is very fearful of de-dollarization, especially coming from its allies.

Bypassing sanctions with currencies other than US dollar, or creating creative finance structures that bypass the SWIFT payment system, are the only means of maintaining relations between countries in spite of Washington’s sanctions. The US strategy is limited in the short term and certainly harmful in the long term for US Dollar financial hegemony.

That Washington’s allies are even entertaining such possibilities places US financial hegemony at great risk in the long run. This worries the American deep state a great deal, even without Trump, who in any case will not be in charge past 2024 (should he be re-elected in 2020). One of the points of greatest tension is precisely this strategic difference between the Trump administration and the policy makers in the deep state (aka Langley and Foggy Bottom). While the former can increase the pressure on allies (through Nato, the JCPOA, TTIP, and TPP) to obtain immediate solutions and benefits, the latter must above all consider the effects in the medium and long-term, which are often harmful to US interests. The imposition of sanctions on Iran, and the obligation of European allies to comply with this directive is a prime example.

Another of Washington’s strategies revolves around the price of oil. The United States would have no problem seeing the price of crude oil skyrocket. Secretly, many in the administration hope that Iran will take the first false step by closing the Strait of Hormuz (Teheran will not make this move as things stand now); some even hope that the crisis between Canada and Saudi Arabia will have some impact on the cost of crude oil.

Even trade war and tariffs should be seen as part of Trump’s short-term strategy to demonstrate to his base that something is being done against countries that he thinks are taking advantage of the United States. In reality, Trump knows, or should know, that there is no way of stopping China’s growth, a result of globalization that has been the engine of free-market capitalism, making the western elite richer than ever before. Trump deceives his base with trade wars and tariffs but, in the long run, the costs will be borne by American consumers, many of whom are Trump’s voters.

Trump thinks in the very short term, constantly aiming to present himself before his electors with a list of ticked boxes (Peter Lavelle of Crosstalk gets trademark of this definition), confirming that he is fulfilling his electoral promises. In this way, he hopes to win the midterms in November. To succeed in this endeavor, the economy must pick up to a gallop (for now this is happening thanks to a series of tax cuts and the continuous pumping of easy money from the Federal Reserve) and he must put pressure on his allies as well as aggressively confront Iran, Russia, and China through sanctions, cutting energy supplies, and forcing Tehran to negotiate once again the nuclear agreement.

What many analysts struggle with when trying to analyse Donald Trump is that there is no overarching strategy uniting his actions into a coherent policy. Trump acts extemporaneously, often with a very short strategic outlook and for internal political motivations.

Nevertheless, if there is something that worries the deep state, it is the long-term impact of tariffs, trade war, sanctions, and impositions on allies; or, to put it most simply, de-dollarization. If there is anything that scares the Trump administration, it is remaining entangled in a destabilizing war with Iran that would lead to the early end of the Trump presidency and destroying its legacy, as Bush’s legacy was destroyed by Iraq.

In all this uncoordinated and inconsistent behaviour, there is the hope of a major rise in the price of oil that would help slow down China’s growth and transform the US shale-gas industry into an ultra-profitable business, further boosting the US economy and allowing Trump to present further evidence to his base of his ability to improve their lives.

The United States is in the terminal phase of its unipolar moment and is struggling to come to terms with the downsizing of its role in the world. Its ruling elite cannot accept the prospect of sharing power, preferring to oppose by all means possible the transition to a world order involving more powers. If this situation is already complex for any superpower enough to manage, a president has been elected who has little regard for compromise and mediation.

Ultimately, in addition to an obvious problem in defining Washington’s role in the world over the next few years, the United States finds itself with a president who is in almost open warfare with an important part of the US establishment. The deep state is still living on the hope of impeaching Trump to halt the loss of US influence, deluding themselves that things can return to how they were at the height of the unipolar moment in the 1990s.

_____

Republishing is welcomed with reference to Strategic Culture Foundation on-line journal http://www.strategic-culture.org.

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/08/14/end-of-us-unipolar-moment-irreversible.html

Categories: Uncategorized

World War Two and the Atomic Bomb

2018/08/15 Leave a comment

Western Leaders Ignored The Dangers of Nuclear Weapons

by Shane Quinn

Global Research (May 25 2018)

Albert Speer, the Nazi architect and war minister, observed how his paymaster Adolf Hitler was “filled with a fundamental distrust of all innovations which, as in the case of jet aircraft or atom bombs, went beyond the technical experience of the First World War generation, and presaged an era he could not know”.

Hitler was indeed involved from the First World War’s outset, having voluntarily enlisted to join the Bavarian Army in early August 1914. As a humble dispatch runner, Hitler was present at a list of major conflicts – from the First Battle of Ypres in November 1914, through to the bloody fighting at Passchendaele (July-November 1917), having recovered from injury to his left thigh during the 1916 Battle of the Somme, after a shell exploded close-by. At war’s end, with Hitler almost thirty years old, there was little indication he would evolve into a dictator set on colossal genocide of Jewish and Slavic populations.

As with many First World War veterans, Hitler had a conventional, old-fashioned view regarding artillery and weapons. Furthermore, like many of those who survived the Great War, the hammering psychological impacts of the conflict remained embedded in the mind.

While writing at Spandau prison in 1952, Speer recalled that,

 

 

Even as a military commander, Hitler was inclined to think of the psychological rather than the military potency of a weapon. That was shown early when Hitler devised the siren for Stukas, and regarded the demoralizing howl as having a greater effect than the explosive force of the bombs. And this bias assumed strange and militarily-unfortunate forms when the sub-machine gun was ready for production – and Hitler delayed its introduction month after month because, he argued, the soldier’s use of the rifle forced him to become a good shot and bayonet fighter, and thus called for soldierly virtues.

 

Crucially, Speer further noted how:

 

 

Such psychologizing of all military technology became sheer grotesquery when Hitler begged Rommel and me to develop automatically-rotating flamethrowers, which would work in the manner of lawn sprinklers. These, he argued, would be the prime defense against [an Allied] invasion. Judging by Hitler’s experiences in the First World War, nothing was more terrifying to a soldier than a jet of flame aimed at him. The prospect of being burned to death spread panic, whereas death from a bullet always came unexpectedly and was more honorable. By the spring of 1944, more than 20,000 flamethrowers were produced and available … The objections of military analysts meant nothing to Hitler once he began ranting about the devastating psychological effect.

 

In relation to the possible planet-altering subject of nuclear weapons, by June 1942, at the height of the war, Speer noted Hitler’s “growing resolve not to pursue the matter”. The Nazi leader felt atomic weapons could turn the earth “into a glowing star”, while he further joked that the scientists “might one day set the globe on fire” by their discoveries. The English author and Third Reich specialist, Geoffrey Michael Brooks, wrote that Hitler had a revealing discussion in November 1944 with SS lieutenant-colonel Otto Skorzeny (Benito Mussolini’s chief rescuer the year before).

Regarding the atomic bomb, Hitler told Skorzeny that

 

 

even if the radioactivity could be controlled, and you used fission as a weapon, then the effects would be terrible … it would be the Apocalypse … No nation, no group of civilized people could take on such a responsibility. The first bomb would be answered by a second, and then humanity would be forced down the road to extinction.

 

Almost, as it has proved, or not yet perhaps – as numerous near-fatal incidents with increasingly powerful nuclear bombs have occurred in the post-World War Two period. Today, the threat of global destruction from nuclear weapons is grave, as outlined by the atomic scientists who control the Doomsday Clock. The dangers were all too real from the beginning. In mid-July 1945 Enrico Fermi, the Americans’ chief nuclear physicist, was about to test the world’s first atomic bomb in New Mexico, when “he suddenly offered to take wagers from his fellow scientists on whether or not the bomb would ignite the atmosphere, and if so, whether it would merely destroy New Mexico, or destroy the world“. Such were the terrors afflicting him.

In what must be one of the greatest ironies in world history, the leading Nazi dictator (Hitler) – unlike his democratically elected Western counterparts – foresaw, from quite early, the enormous threat nuclear weapons would pose to the earth. Unperturbed, by December 1942, US president Franklin D Roosevelt had given “final approval” to build the atomic bomb, continuing its unwavering development even after it became clear, in late 1943, that the Nazis’ nuclear program was “stillborn”.

Elsewhere, a further critical influence behind Hitler’s mistrust of nuclear research was his decorated advisor, Philipp Lenard, the veteran Nobel Prize-winning physicist – and a supporter of Hitler dating to the 1920s. Discussing such matters with companions at dinner, Hitler cited nuclear research as belonging to “Jewish physics”, backing up his arguments by invoking Lenard’s racist theories. Hitler later appointed the German scientist as “Chief of Aryan physics”.

Lenard was a merciless critic of the great Jewish theoretical physicist, Albert Einstein, whom he said was responsible for “the Jewish fraud” of the theory of relativity – which is now considered one of the two cornerstones of modern physics, along with quantum mechanics. Speer wrote that

 

 

Lenard had instilled the idea in Hitler that the Jews were exerting a seditious influence in their concern with nuclear physics and the relativity theory.

 

With such an unrepentant anti-Semite as Hitler, Lenard’s words must have carried deep resonance.

Einstein himself, who was born in southern Germany, unwittingly became one of the instigators behind America beginning their unrelenting nuclear program, called the “Manhattan Project”. Einstein signed a letter to President Roosevelt, sent on 2 August 1939, warning that the Nazis could develop an atomic bomb in the near future. Roosevelt replied personally to Einstein over two months later, promising he would “thoroughly investigate the possibilities of your suggestion regarding the element of uranium”, one of the key components in nuclear weapons production.

Unfortunately, Einstein could not have been aware of Hitler’s full personality and anti-modernist nature, nor his distrust of nuclear research. In 1954, the year before Einstein died, he described his signing of the letter to Roosevelt as the “one great mistake in my life”.

While Roosevelt, and successor Harry Truman, were firm advocates of nuclear research, Hitler’s mind was on anything but atomic weapons. By late summer 1942, his German forces were bludgeoning their way toward the southern Russian city of Astrakhan – with the aim of also taking oil-rich Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan. While Napoleon had been unable to last the Russian winter of 1812, the Germans were proving to have greater endurance. Though suffering significant losses, the Wehrmacht survived Joseph Stalinā€˜s counter-offensive of December 1941, before regrouping.

By mid-1942, it seemed the Nazis were comfortably winning the war, with much of mainland Europe under their bloody occupation. Speer went so far as to discern that,

 

 

There actually no longer seemed to be any resistance to Hitler left in Europe.

 

Toward the end of August 1942, the Nazi leader met Speer, along with several industrialists, at his Vinnitsa Werwolf headquarters, in central Ukraine.

The atmosphere at Hitler’s Ukrainian compound was “in splendid humor”, as the new armaments minister observed. Following a conference, Hitler outlined his plans to Speer in person:

 

 

For a long time I have had everything prepared. As the next step we are going to advance south of the Caucasus, and then help the rebels in Iran and Iraq against the English. Another thrust will be directed along the Caspian Sea towards Afghanistan and India. Then the English will run out of oil. In two years we’ll be at the borders of India, twenty to thirty elite German divisions will do. Then the British empire will collapse. They’ve already lost Singapore to the Japanese. The English will have to look on impotently as their colonial empire falls to pieces.

 

Noting the French emperor’s woes of 130 years before, Hitler continued that

 

Napoleon wanted to conquer Russia and the world by way of Egypt. He would have reached his goal if he had not made great mistakes. I shall avoid such mistakes, depend on that … By the end of 1943, we will pitch our tents in Tehran, Baghdad, and on to the Persian Gulf. Then the oil wells will at last be dry as far as the English are concerned.

 

Amid his vast military plans, Hitler’s belief in warfare again remained rooted among his experiences of fighting in the trenches. His disdain of the machine gun extended upwards to his mistrust of jet propulsion, which he felt a major threat to classical aerial combat. The dictator consistently interfered with development of the world’s first jet-powered fighter aircraft, the Messerschmitt Me 262 – he delayed its production for months on end, until it was too late while insisting it should be used as a simple bomber rather than as a fighter aircraft.

Even in Hitler’s efforts to thwart a possible Allied invasion from France, his ideas were remarkably conventional and outmoded. On 20 April 1943, his 54th birthday, Hitler discussed with Speer and State Secretary, Karl-Otto Saur, how best to repel an American and British landing in the West: By designing six-man bunkers, equipped with just anti-tank guns and flamethrowers, which Hitler himself had just sketched on paper.

The dictator said,

 

 

We’ll build thousands of this model [the bunkers] and scatter them along the Atlantic Wall as additional defenses. Later, we’ll use the same model on our final Eastern boundary deep in Russia.

 

Sensing the surprised feelings of both Speer and Saur, Hitler continued,

 

 

You see, I have to do everything myself. Nobody hit on this idea. Bemedalled generals, technicians, armaments experts surround me, but everything rests on my shoulders. From the smallest to the biggest! Here I am, 54 years old, and you can see the condition I’m in. But I’ll still have to lead the great clash with the USA.

 

_____

Shane Quinn obtained an honors journalism degree. He is interested in writing primarily on foreign affairs, having been inspired by authors like Noam Chomsky. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The Centre for Research on Globalization will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article.

Copyright (c) Shane Quinn, Global Research, 2018

https://www.globalresearch.ca/world-war-ii-and-the-atomic-bomb-western-leaders-ignored-the-dangers-of-nuclear-weapons/5641785

Categories: Uncategorized

Neocons Demand “Crushing” Sanctions on Russia

2018/08/15 Leave a comment

by Ron Paul

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org (August 06 2018)

You can always count on the neocons in Congress to ignore reality, ignore evidence, and ignore common sense in their endless drive to get us involved in another war. Last week, for example, Senators John McCain (Republican, Arizona), Lindsey Graham (Republican, North Carolina), Bob Menendez (Democrat, New Jersey), and others joined up to introduce what Senator Graham called “the sanctions bill from hell”, aimed at applying “crushing” sanctions on Russia.

Senator Graham bragged that the bill would include “everything but the kitchen sink” in its attempt to ratchet up tensions with Russia.

Senator Cory Gardner (Republican, Colorado) bragged that the new sanctions bill “includes my language requiring the State Department to determine whether Russia merits the designation of a State Sponsor of Terror”.

Does he even know what the word “terrorism” means?

Senator Ben Cardin (Democrat, Maryland) warns that the bill must be passed to strengthen our resolve against “Vladimir Putin’s pattern of corroding democratic institutions and values around the world, a direct and growing threat to US national security”.

What has Russia done that warrants “kitchen sink” sanctions that will “crush” the country and possibly designate it as a sponsor of terrorism? Senator Menendez tells us: “The Kremlin continues to attack our democracy, support a war criminal in Syria, and violate Ukraine’s sovereignty”.

There is a big problem with these accusations on Russia: they’re based on outright lies and unproven accusations that continue to get more bizarre with each re-telling. How strange that when US Senators like Menendez demand that we stand by our Nato allies even if it means war, they attack Russia for doing the same in Syria. Is the Syrian president a “war criminal”, as he claims? We do know that his army is finally, with Russian and Iranian help, about to defeat ISIS and al-Qaeda, which with US backing for seven years have turned Syria into a smoking ruin. Do Menendez and his allies prefer ISIS in charge of Syria?

And how hypocritical for Menendez to talk about Russia violating Ukraine’s sovereignty. The unrest in Ukraine was started by the 2014 US-backed coup against an elected leader. We have that all on tape!

How is Russia “attacking our democracy”? We’re still waiting for any real evidence that Russia was involved in our 2016 elections and intends to become involved in our 2018 elections. But that doesn’t stop the propagandists, who claim with no proof that Russia was behind the election of Donald Trump.

These Senators claim that sanctions will bring the Russians to heel, but they are wrong. Sanctions are good at two things only: destroying the lives of innocent civilians and leading to war.

As I mentioned in an episode of my Liberty Report last week, even our own history shows that sanctions do lead to war and should not be taken lightly. In the run-up to US involvement in the War of 1812, the US was doing business with both France and the UK, which were at war with each other. When the UK decided that the US was favoring France in its commerce, it imposed sanctions on the US. What did Washington do in response? Declared war. Hence the War of 1812, which most Americans remember as that time when the British burned down the White House.

Recent polls show that the majority of Americans approve of President Trump’s recent meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Among Republicans, a vast majority support the meeting. Perhaps a good defeat in November will wake these neocon warmongers up. Let’s hope so!

Copyright (c) 2018 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.

Please donate to the Ron Paul Institute: https://donations.ronpaulinstitute.org/donate-now.aspx/

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/06/neocons-demand-crushing-sanctions-on-russia/

Categories: Uncategorized

The Corporate-driven Assaults on the Planet

2018/08/15 Leave a comment

Irreversible Destruction

by Shane Quinn

Global Research (August 13 2018)

Mounting evidence suggests the human race may be rapidly reaching its end, taking much else along with it. Every 24 hours, up to 200 species are being exterminated by humans, ranging from insects to birds. The massive rate of animal extinction, only matched by the “dinosaur asteroid” of about 66 million years ago, is practically unknown to the world’s public.

The planet’s quickening annihilation is vigorously kept secret from global populations by the powers-that-be, the wealthy states, who themselves are primarily culpable for the Anthropocene. That being, the new epoch of human-driven destruction irrevocably altering the earth’s landscapes, whose roots can be traced to the Industrial Revolution starting in Great Britain during the mid-eighteenth century.

While first world nations accelerate towards the cliff’s edge, it is a great irony that those attempting to rescue the world are the indigenous populations. The efforts of indigenous communities to stem the waves of disaster can be seen in countries like Bolivia, Ecuador, Canada, Australia, India, and so on. It includes concerted attempts by them to keep oil in the ground where it should remain, preserving rainforests, wetlands and other precious habitats from corporate-led exploitation. Many examples are borne out of the “backward” peoples trying to shield the planet from the assaults of the “enlightened” ones, with some being killed trying to protect their homelands.

The driving force behind the unprecedented destruction are the multinational corporations and financial institutions, which have accumulated awesome influence and wealth, particularly over the past four decades. It is no coincidence that during this time-span the planet’s deterioration has greatly increased in intensity. Such is the power of corporate and financial centers that they now control much of Western government policy, and have infiltrated mainstream media to an extent that the public have little impact on the information they consume – most of which is blatant propaganda diverted towards “Russian meddling” or “Novichok poisoning”, and on other unimportant issues such as celebrity scandals, isolated crime cases, et cetera.

The most harmful aspect of the corporate financial ideology is: To gain short-term profits at whatever the cost may be, even if it means performing a central role in driving up carbon emissions, wiping out environments and destroying the prospects of young generations. A successful chief executive will continue seeking profits for the company regardless. If business bosses began acting out of benevolent interests for the planet, they would soon be replaced by others more inclined.

ExxonMobil, the US multinational and world’s largest oil company, was aware in the early 1980s that climate change was becoming a reality. Undeterred, ExxonMobil has for years spent fortunes promoting climate change denial in its ruthless drive to achieve profits and market share – the forbidden term “profits” often relayed to the public under the underhand title of “jobs”. Ongoing propaganda like this has had some effect with fewer Americans (56%) believing in climate change by comparison to Europeans (64%).

One can see again the multinational powers are doing everything they can to push the species over the precipice as quickly as possible. Little of these disturbing facts are reported by establishment and media circles, however, which is revealing in itself. It may come as no great surprise that the climate change denial industry is most powerful in the US, which is to a great extent a business-run society. This is serious in the extreme as America is the second biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind China. Currently, the Donald Trump administration is continuing to dismantle EPA legislation that sought to limit carbon emissions, such as that released from cars and other vehicles like trucks.

This is just one example of the ongoing assaults on the planet directed by Trump’s government, ranging from cuts to climate change research, attacks on animal protection legislation, weakening of regulation on toxic air pollution, the burning of coal and extraction of oil, et cetera. It is a determined effort to eliminate decent existence for the upcoming generations, in the unscrupulous bid to gain as much wealth as possible.

In many ways, one could argue that the death knell for the human race arrived at the end of World War Two, with the unloading of nuclear bombs on Japanese cities. Since 1945, humans have been living on borrowed time as nuclear upgrading and proliferation has continued apace, increasing the risks of a nuclear Armageddon. Despite the perils, the introduction of atomic weapons was enthusiastically pushed forward by Western figureheads like Franklin D Roosevelt, his successor Harry Truman, and Winston Churchill. That is, the prominent democratically elected leaders. As Churchill himself later said of the decision to use atomic bombs on Japan, “There was unanimous, automatic, unquestioned agreement around our table”.

In another major irony, Adolf Hitler, one of the most denigrated figures in modern history and chief perpetrator of the Holocaust, had allegedly warned that the creation of nuclear weapons would wipe out all humans, along with plants and animals. Providing some of the insights is SS Lieutenant-Colonel Otto Skorzeny, often regarded as one of Hitler’s “favorite soldiers” and “the most dangerous man in Europe”.

In his extended memoirs published in early 1975, Skorzeny writes that,

 

In autumn 1940 Hitler had a long discussion on the subject [nuclear fission] with Dr Fritz Todt, the armaments minister. Hitler’s opinion never changed: he thought the use of atomic energy for military purposes would mean the end of humanity. We also know today that Hitler read not only the paper that Professor Heisenberg wrote at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in 1942 (on Nuclear Fission and the Construction of the Atomic pile with Uranium …) but also other reports on [nuclear] research conducted prior to 1941.

 

Skorzeny further details an alleged private meeting he had with Hitler occurring when,

 

In October 1944, after the Budapest operation, I flew once again to Fuhrer Headquarters in East Prussia. Preparations were being made for the Ardennes offensive and Hitler wanted to give me his instructions for Operation Greif … At Fuhrer Headquarters, they told me that Hitler was sick in bed but that he wished to speak with me at once. I am certainly one of the few visitors, if not the only one, whom the Fuhrer received in bed. I found him very changed, emaciated, but as always mentally alert … Spontaneously I began speaking of the rumors about artificial radioactivity and its eventual use as a weapon. Hitler looked at me with feverish, gleaming eyes.

 

He reveals that Hitler (allegedly) replied to him,

 

Do you know, Skorzeny, if the energy and radioactivity released through nuclear fission were used as a weapon, that would mean the end of our planet? The effects would be frightful. Naturally! Even if the radioactivity were controlled and nuclear fission used as a weapon, the effects would still be horrible. When Dr Todt was with me, I read that such a device with controlled radioactivity would release energy that would leave behind devastation which could only be compared with the meteors that fell in Arizona, and near Lake Baikal in Siberia. That means every form of life, not only human, but animal and plant life as well, would be totally extinguished for hundreds of years within a radius of forty kilometers. That would be the Apocalypse … From strike to counter-strike, humanity would inevitably exterminate itself.

 

These alleged statements emanating from the Nazi regime remain to be verified.

Today, the threat of nuclear destruction is rising as the US relentlessly modernizes its weapons program, seemingly tipping the balance further in its favor against the Russians – as Vladimir Putin is surely aware, judging by his public statements in recent times regarding nuclear weapons. According to John Polanyi, the veteran Canadian Nobel Prize-winning chemist, the main reason for the growing nuclear threat and imbalance is, “a substantial increase in lethality of US nuclear-armed, submarine-based missiles”. The nuclear standoff between the US and Russia is akin to “a gun dual between armed cowboys – nothing is less stable”. The US modernization seeks to eliminate a Russian deterrent, an aim that could well have been realized.

However, this may all be irrelevant. Were the Russians unable to even retaliate to a US first-strike, the Western superpower would still be annihilated, along with the rest of the world. Environmental scientists discovered the extinction phenomenon of nuclear winter in the early 1980s – which proves that even a limited nuclear war would result in huge levels of soot and smoke blocking out most sunlight, destroying all harvests worldwide, and resulting in near-universal starvation. Less than 100,000 humans would be expected to survive in the years after a nuclear war, out of the current population of 7.6 billion.

There is no evidence that any of these realities have penetrated the conscience of military planners. The means to eliminate these threats lies at our disposal, yet the opposite is occurring in many cases with scarcely a warning coming from establishment or news sectors. It perfectly summarizes the madness of the species.

_____

Shane Quinn is a frequent contributor to Global Research

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The Centre for Research on Globalization will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article.

Copyright (c) Shane Quinn, Global Research, 2018

https://www.globalresearch.ca/the-corporate-driven-assaults-on-the-planet-irreversible-destruction/5650451

Categories: Uncategorized

Is There Enough of America Left to be Saved?

2018/08/14 Leave a comment

by Paul Craig Roberts

https://www.paulcraigroberts.org (August 09 2018)

As many readers of this website have noticed, the United States has lost its character and become a dysfunctional society. In place of a largely homogeneous population once united in veneration of the Constitution, there exists today massive diversity which Identity Politics has used to disunite the population into separate interest groups.

No clause or article of the Constitution, nor the Bill of Rights, is safe. The George W Bush and Obama regimes destroyed two of the most important protections of civil liberty – habeas corpus and due process. Bush declared indefinite imprisonment on suspicion alone without evidence or trial. Obama declared execution of US citizens on accusation alone without due process. The Justice (sic) Department wrote legal memos justifying torture, thus destroying the constitutional protection against self-incrimination. One of the authors of the memos is now a professor of law at the University of California, Berkeley. The other is now a federal judge, indications that respect for the Constitution and enforcement of US and international laws against torture is fading in law schools and the federal judiciary.

A third important protection of civil liberty – freedom of speech, which is necessary for the discovery of truth and to serve justice – is being destroyed. Apple, Google/Facebook, Twitter, Spotify, university speech codes, legislation against protesting Israel’s atrocities against Palestinians, and the presstitute media that has been turned into a propaganda organ in behalf of vested interests are all actively involved in protecting lies against truth.

Glenn Greenwald reported that “the single greatest threat to free speech in the West – and in the US – is the coordinated, growing campaign to outlaw and punish those who advocate for, or participate in, activism to end the Israeli occupation” of Palestine {1}.

The Second Amendment, which was placed in the Constitution as a defense against oppression by government, is under attack by well-financed organizations in service to the police state with the intention of disarming the population. Many attentive Americans are convinced that mass shootings are staged or pretended in order to create public support for repealing the Second Amendment. Clearly, the amount of effort expended against the Second Amendment is disproportional to the number of shooting deaths as compared to other causes of deaths. Why this one cause of deaths has so many well-financed and politically active organizations compared to other causes of deaths is a question that is studiously avoided. We see far more opposition to the Second Amendment than we see against Washington’s destruction in whole or part of seven countries during the past two decades, resulting in the death, maiming, widowing, orphaning, and displacement of millions of peoples.

In an Orwellian twist, freedom of religion is now interpreted as a prohibition against celebrating Christianity, the religious basis of the country, in public arenas.

Law faculties and the ACLU have deemphasized the original rights specified in the Constitution, emphasizing instead rights for transgendered, homosexuals, illegal aliens, and those seeking and performing abortions – a horrendous crime only a few decades ago.

Today all it takes to trump the US Constitution is to utter “National Security”.

As the United States is the Constitution, destroying the Constitution destroys the United States. Yet those destroying the Constitution claim that they are making the country safe by substituting police state measures for civil liberty.

The newly invented rights and the speech codes are used as weapons against heterosexual white males and to transfer authority from white male professors and managers to university and corporate “diversity offices” acting in behalf of “oppressed minorities” (women, non-white races except apparently Asians, homosexuals, transgendered). In the August 2018 issue of Chronicles, a magazine of American culture, Jack Trotter relates one of his experiences as an assistant professor “at a major Southern university, one of those SEC football titans”. In a lecture, he encouraged his students to “avoid excessive use of abstract, Latinate terms in their writing”. He was accused of committing a racist crime of advocating white superiority by expressing a preference for short words with clear meaning that comprise Anglo-Saxon vocabulary. The absurd charge was placed in Trotter’s university file for internal use in the event he gave further indications of white supremacy by uttering the term Anglo-Saxon.

It gets even more ridiculous than this. A professor I know at a major research university was unaware that “girls” had been made an insensitive word and used it in class. He was called before a diversity dean and told that one more infraction and he would have to attend a class in “diversity training”.

The same thing happened to a graduate student at an English University who was one Friday afternoon sitting talking with three secretaries who were describing the evening out they had planned. He said: “sounds like a fun girls’ night out”. The expression “girls night out” is an old one widely used by women themselves, but the secretaries took offense at the word “girls”, complained, and the graduate student was subjected to sensitivity training.

Any member of an “oppressed minority” can make a complaint against a white male on any basis, and it is in the vested interest of the diversity office, whether university or corporate – remember the Google case – to regard the complaint both as true and as an offense {2}

A couple of years ago a black female student claimed that as she walked past a fraternity house on the Georgia Tech campus, racial slurs were yelled at her from an open window. The president immediately suspended the fraternity without due process. It was proven that all the windows in the house had been painted shut for many years and that none of them would open. But the penalty against the fraternity stood.

It would be interesting to know if white males are permitted to file complaints against radical feminists who dismiss all white heterosexual males as rapists and black professors who describe whites as “ice people”, racists, and imperial/colonial exploiters.

The question is: are white heterosexual males protected by speech codes? I would suspect that if a white male filed a complaint against a man-hating feminist, the diversity office would take the complaint as proof that the white male is a misogynist, and if a white male filed a complaint against a black it would be interpreted as proof of the white male’s racism.

There have been some cases of Christian students complaining of prejudices that professors display against Christianity but, by and large, I don’t think the complaints have had much success.

Liberals will say that the rights protected in the Constitution are more prevalent, not less. They will point to the success of the civil rights movement in integrating blacks. Overall, however, it is not clear that blacks have any more due process and habeas corpus rights under the War on Terror than they had under Jim Crow. The overall loss of civil liberty cancels the blacks’ gains. Indeed, have blacks actually gained any rights when the police with little accountability can shoot down unarmed blacks on the streets and in their own homes? If gun control is needed, why isn’t it needed for the police?

Just as protests against Israel’s atrocities against the Palestinians are being criminalized throughout the West, so is free speech that challenges the self-serving agendas of governments and vested interests. The hope that the Internet and social media would expand free speech have been proven wrong by the move against Alex Jones, the Ron Paul Institute, and antiwar.com by Apple, Twitter, and Google/Facebook. Apparently, these corporations are convinced that Western peoples are sufficiently in the power of The Matrix that the attack on the First Amendment will cost them no lost business or condemnation by the public.

That corporations believe that they can attack the First Amendment with no adverse consequences to themselves shows the extent to which the United States has eroded.

Links:

{1} https://theintercept.com/2016/02/16/greatest-threat-to-free-speech-in-the-west-criminalizing-activism-against-israeli-occupation/

{2} https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2017/08/08/google-committed-suppression-free-speech/

Copyright (c) 2016 PaulCraigRoberts.org. All rights reserved.

https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2018/08/09/is-there-enough-of-america-left-to-be-saved/

Categories: Uncategorized